Author Topic: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)  (Read 130501 times)

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Offline Monsoon

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #25 on: February 16, 2014, 10:11:47 »
Or perhaps this whole thing was just orchestrated as a PR stunt before the TB cuts or modifies yet another one of our benefits.  IR benefits and severance pay come to mind....
I think this is considerably more about sending a nice little "welcome to politics" message to the future Liberal candidate in Ottawa-Orleans. If he thought he was going to run on the strength of his leaked cost-cutting report, he's going to be doing so on a back foot now.

Offline E.R. Campbell

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #26 on: February 16, 2014, 10:23:47 »
Thank you for that link.  It qualifies many of the posts that followed.

It really doesn't matter on what rank a member retires at after over ten years of service; according to the directive any move will be a fairly expensive cost.  Movers are not cheap.  Realtors (X2) are not cheap.   Lawyers and Legal Fees (both ends of move) are not cheap.  Hotel accommodations are/may be involved.   Temporary storage may be involved.  Contracts for cleaners may be involved.  Building Inspector fees most likely are an additional cost.  Travel costs, even for a short distance are involved.  I am quite sure that the expense of $72K for this move, can easily be matched by dozens or more moves made by other members of the CAF on Release after twenty or more years of service.   The longer the member serves the more they accumulate in property and the larger their family may become.   It is only common sense that their last moves may be expensive.  Perhaps the author of this article is on a "witch hunt" looking for some sensationalism to promote their own agenda......or they just have no common sense.


I think anyone who follows my ramblings here on Army.ca will acknowledge that I'm no great fan of journalism, per se, nor for that matter of many journalists. (There are a couple of exceptions.)

But, in all fairness, journalism is a highly competitive business and journalists are under constant pressure to find "news" and LGen (ret'd) Leslie, by making himself a public, political personality is "newsworthy" when his private affairs appear to be "out of line" with the experiences of many Canadians.

Mr Staples' comments simply affirm that he is trying to exploit LGen (ret'd) Leslie's wholly legitimate financial entitlements for his (Staples') own anti-military agenda. But, rest assured, the Conservative election campaign War Room will recycle this as part of a campaign to paint M. Trudeau and his advisors as self-indulgent "children of privilege" who bill charities for speaking fees and the taxpayers for local moves. It will be shabby and dishonest but we all know, by now, that negative advertising works in politics.

Finally, there has been for a generation now, a new model for journalism:



and




Edit: format
« Last Edit: February 16, 2014, 12:36:25 by E.R. Campbell »
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Offline Transporter

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #27 on: February 16, 2014, 10:36:03 »
I think this is considerably more about sending a nice little "welcome to politics" message to the future Liberal candidate in Ottawa-Orleans. If he thought he was going to run on the strength of his leaked cost-cutting report, he's going to be doing so on a back foot now.
Agreed. Why else would anyone be looking into his expense claims?

Offline Alberta Bound

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #28 on: February 16, 2014, 12:56:52 »
The CFIRP Directive only distinguishes certain benefits for retirement as not being allowed on a move under 40 kms to my understanding. I believe that is that only the HHT/DIT and HEA are not authorized. Besides that what Gen Leslie did was within policy. Although CRA have in the past ruled that retirement moves under 40 kms are a taxable benefit. So he may end up having to pay the taxman something.

The only thing I see Gen Leslie doing wrong was quoting the RCMP as getting the same benefit. A small misconception. A number of years ago the RCMP IRP Directive was changed to disallow benefits for retirement moves under 40 kms and/or if a member had never transferred from their engagement location. This was due to a news story about a large number of our civilian members (not PSs) and even a couple regular members getting retirement moves in and around their engagement location (Ottawa-Gatineau especially) without ever having had to take a transfer to a new posting during their service.

Offline Old Sweat

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #29 on: February 16, 2014, 13:01:13 »
It also seems to me that Gen Leslie joined the army in Ottawa. He was a Arty RESO Phase 1 student in Gagetown in 1977 when I was CIG at the school. I believe he was attending U of O and was affiliated with the 30th Fd.

Edit to add: This is confirmed by his on line biography from the RCA Museum:

http://www.rcamuseum.com/English/Great%20Gunners/lesliea.htm
« Last Edit: February 16, 2014, 13:13:08 by Old Sweat »

Offline DAA

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #30 on: February 16, 2014, 13:29:41 »
Yes, he did start his CF career as a Reservist.

He did nothing more than any other retiring CF member does when claiming the benefits of an IPR, which are very unique to the CF and a few other OGD's (ie; RCMP).  Of note, the CF does NOT administer the benefits associated with Relocation.  This is done through contract with the current service provider, Brookefield Relocation Services.  The CF merely develops the policy and Brookefield is responsible to implement/administer it in conjunction with the individual's relocation needs.

A move to an IPR location which is under 40km, does include the"limitation of benefits" of some benefits but not that many.

So while $72K may seem like an extraordinarily large sum, the payment of those funds would have been made by Brookefield Relocation Services based on existant policy and not by someone in the CF.
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Offline pbi

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #31 on: February 16, 2014, 14:03:03 »

.. But, rest assured, the Conservative election campaign War Room will recycle this as part of a campaign to paint M. Trudeau and his advisors as self-indulgent "children of privilege" who bill charities for speaking fees and the taxpayers for local moves. It will be shabby and dishonest but we all know, by now, that negative advertising works in politics.

And herein, IMHO, lies a certain danger of "collateral damage" if the issue of CAF compensation and benefits becomes a political football. Whether or not Leslie is an aspiring Liberal politician isn't really the point. The point is that his benefits legitimately accrued to him as a result of fulfilling a contract he signed with the Crown (and, by extension, the Govt of Canada). The Tories singling these out to attack the Liberals might have unintended consequences for the CAF: most Canadians could only dream of such benefits.

Hopefully the result will not be further penny-pinching driven by "optics".
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Offline DAA

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #32 on: February 16, 2014, 15:35:42 »
And herein, IMHO, lies a certain danger of "collateral damage" if the issue of CAF compensation and benefits becomes a political football. Whether or not Leslie is an aspiring Liberal politician isn't really the point. The point is that his benefits legitimately accrued to him as a result of fulfilling a contract he signed with the Crown (and, by extension, the Govt of Canada). The Tories singling these out to attack the Liberals might have unintended consequences for the CAF: most Canadians could only dream of such benefits.

Hopefully the result will not be further penny-pinching driven by "optics".

I believe that the "optics" are already there and the issue was under the micro-scope last year.  Rumblings were that the policy was going to be changed last Aug or Sep but now that we are 6 months beyond that date, something happened to squash things and leave it be.

Like mentioned previously, now that this benefit has become a potential "lightening rod", all we can do is wait and see if it get's struck.
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Offline PuckChaser

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #33 on: February 16, 2014, 16:07:39 »
So while $72K may seem like an extraordinarily large sum, the payment of those funds would have been made by Brookefield Relocation Services based on existant policy and not by someone in the CF.

I'm curious as to how much of that cost is to pay the moving company. That's got to be a significant portion of it, especially if he's got a large amount of items in a large home. Full day pack, full day load, full day unload, etc.

Offline Eye In The Sky

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #34 on: February 16, 2014, 16:14:16 »

So while $72K may seem like an extraordinarily large sum, the payment of those funds would have been made by Brookefield Relocation Services based on existant policy and not by someone in the CF.

And payouts/benefits based on approved TB policy.

Must be a slow news day.  "Retired General moves IAW Treasury Board Policy, along with XXXX other Reg Force members who retired in that fiscal year."

 :Tin-Foil-Hat:

Offline Monsoon

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #35 on: February 16, 2014, 16:36:21 »
Must be a slow news day.  "Retired General moves IAW Treasury Board Policy, along with XXXX other Reg Force members who retired in that fiscal year."
How many of those members loudly championed defence administration cost savings in a report they compiled and then leaked prior to retiring to go into politics? Somewhat fewer.

I agree that what he did was entirely legal and that he was indeed "entitled to his entitlements". The question of whether or not it was wise given his desire to go into politics as a defence overhead-cutter is another question. If he had retired to private rather than public life there's no question we wouldn't be hearing about this now.

Offline MilEME09

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #36 on: February 16, 2014, 16:42:58 »
How many of those members loudly championed defence administration cost savings in a report they compiled and then leaked prior to retiring to go into politics? Somewhat fewer.

I agree that what he did was entirely legal and that he was indeed "entitled to his entitlements". The question of whether or not it was wise given his desire to go into politics as a defence overhead-cutter is another question. If he had retired to private rather than public life there's no question we wouldn't be hearing about this now.

I cant help but immediately think of the CPC smeer campaign beginning with this, CTV is now reporting the defense minister has ordered an investigation into his claim because he was apparently moving "just down the street" he is a liberal so of course the CPC will want to take him down. I personally want to see Leslie get elected, not in a sitting liberal government, but i think he would be good at keeping DND on its toes.
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Offline Eye In The Sky

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #37 on: February 16, 2014, 16:47:28 »
I cant help but immediately think of the CPC smeer campaign beginning with this, CTV is now reporting the defense minister has ordered an investigation into his claim because he was apparently moving "just down the street" he is a liberal so of course the CPC will want to take him down.

I guess they are then also investigating every person in the BRS organization that had anything to do with that file #.  Someone approved the payments, just like any other move.

Offline DAA

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #38 on: February 16, 2014, 17:02:44 »
I guess they are then also investigating every person in the BRS organization that had anything to do with that file #.  Someone approved the payments, just like any other move.

That's the key!  At the end of the day, the move is "contracted out", so the CF has little if any say on what is or what isn't paid to the member, so long as it falls within the policy guidelines which are sanctioned by Treasury Board.

Very few will know the exact details and I am slightly concerned with the fact that CTV has this kind of "personal" information, especially when the matter is administered by an outside/contracted service provided.

Makes me wonder how secure the information in my own personal previous relocation file is?
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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #39 on: February 16, 2014, 17:23:45 »
And payouts/benefits based on approved TB policy.

Must be a slow news day.  "Retired General moves IAW Treasury Board Policy, along with XXXX other Reg Force members who retired in that fiscal year."

 :Tin-Foil-Hat:
.... At the end of the day, the move is "contracted out", so the CF has little if any say on what is or what isn't paid to the member, so long as it falls within the policy guidelines which are sanctioned by Treasury Board.

Very few will know the exact details and I am slightly concerned with the fact that CTV has this kind of "personal" information, especially when the matter is administered by an outside/contracted service provided.

Makes me wonder how secure the information in my own personal previous relocation file is?
Someone should tell the Minister - this, from CTV .....
Quote
Canada’s minister of national defence says his department intends to examine the “grossly excessive” expenses claimed by a former top-ranking general for a move from his Ottawa home to another residence in the city, shortly after he retired from the Armed Forces.

Documents obtained by CTV News on Saturday revealed that retired general Andrew Leslie, who once led Canada’s mission in Afghanistan, claimed more than $72,000 in moving expenses, including real estate fees, for a move in 2012.

“As such, I will be asking the Department of National Defence to examine how an in-city move could possibly total over $72,000,” Minister of National Defence Rob Nicholson told CTV News in an email on Sunday.

“In the meantime, it is important for Andrew Leslie to explain why he believes this is a reasonable expense for hard working Canadians to absorb. This is a matter of judgment and the responsible use of taxpayers dollars."

 Leslie retired from the military in 2011, but members of the Canadian Forces are entitled to expense one last move after they retire.

In a statement to CTV News on Saturday, Leslie was adamant that he did not break any rules.

“The Department of National Defence handles and pays all the costs for packing, shipping… The overwhelming majority of the expense is certainly the real estate fees,” the statement said ....
« Last Edit: February 16, 2014, 17:26:32 by milnews.ca »
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Offline Lightguns

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #40 on: February 16, 2014, 17:50:24 »
It's a political football now, regardless of the regs or privacy.  The CPC needs to discredit Liberal Andy as a future MND or MFA.  Welcome to real politics, SIR!  No hiding now.  They will spin him to be a Liberal elitist taking money away from busking Cpls in Cold Lake!
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Offline DAA

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #41 on: February 16, 2014, 18:03:12 »
Someone should tell the Minister - this, from CTV .....

Makes some sense on the final price tag, given the costs involved for both the purchase and sale of which there are NO limits other than with regard to property size.  I would assume that the previous property was comparable in price to the new purchase, so no wonder the big $$$.  Everything is proportional based on cost and cost is proportional based on location.

I saw a similar internal "whoop dee doo" almost 20 years ago, when the program first started out, was in it's infancy and the individual was claiming real estate and legal fees on the sale of a $600K home.  The first question asked was "What is a CF member doing, owning such an expensive home?"     :facepalm:

And the proportionate response, may be some sort of knee jerk reaction and all current CF members may very well pay the price of losing these benefits.

But still, at the end of the day, LGen Leslie is claiming an IPR, no different than any other CF member, regardless of rank is doing, so it begs the question of "How did they obtain information on his IPR relocation expenses, which probably weren't meant to be for public record?"   You could be next!
« Last Edit: February 16, 2014, 18:21:01 by DAA »
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Offline Transporter

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #42 on: February 16, 2014, 18:23:37 »
As previously noted, it's political now. And regardless of whether LGen Leslie did everything completely within the rules or not, you can rest assured that this will be another benefit that will have the screws tightened on it, all in the name of taxpayer accountability and scoring cheap political points leading up to the next election.

Offline DAA

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #43 on: February 16, 2014, 18:29:09 »
As previously noted, it's political now. And regardless of whether LGen Leslie did everything completely within the rules or not, you can rest assured that this will be another benefit that will have the screws tightened on it, all in the name of taxpayer accountability and scoring cheap political points leading up to the next election.

No doubt but here is an off the cuff thought!

Will he throw the entire CF under the bus or will he navigate this minefield and come out on the higher political ground without doing that?
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Offline reveng

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #44 on: February 16, 2014, 18:30:51 »

Will he throw the entire CF under the bus or will he navigate this minefield and come out on the higher political ground without doing that?

Depends - are we taking bets?  >:D

Offline Transporter

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #45 on: February 16, 2014, 18:36:53 »
No doubt but here is an off the cuff thought!

Will he throw the entire CF under the bus or will he navigate this minefield and come out on the higher political ground without doing that?
I don't think Leslie will throw anyone under the bus (if that's what you're asking), as long as everything he claimed and received approval was above board. He can simply say he did nothing but follow the rules provided by TB and as administered by BRS. But it won't matter to the Cons. They will exploit it to the hilt and will take it a step further to change the rules, all so they can tell Joe public that they are in their corner when it comes to managing their hard-earned tax dollars.

Offline DAA

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #46 on: February 16, 2014, 18:49:32 »
Depends - are we taking bets?  >:D

Time will tell, it will all come out in the wash.

Chances are, some pundit assigned or volunteering for his campaign as an advisor will steer him in a direction which is compatible for election and based on the flavour of the electorate.  So the more the topic gains steam and the more the general population bites/feeds into this, the more he has to distance himself from it.

That's why they call it "Politics".

I don't think Leslie will throw anyone under the bus (if that's what you're asking), as long as everything he claimed and received approval was above board. He can simply say he did nothing but follow the rules provided by TB and as administered by BRS. But it won't matter to the Cons. They will exploit it to the hilt and will take it a step further to change the rules, all so they can tell Joe public that they are in their corner when it comes to managing their hard-earned tax dollars.

It's too late now, if in fact he is actually considering running a successful compaign as a Liberal.  Policy matters are out of his hands and into his advisors, no matter what he thinks.  It's all about votes.
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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #47 on: February 16, 2014, 18:50:25 »
It's a political football now, regardless of the regs or privacy.  The CPC needs to discredit Liberal Andy as a future MND or MFA.  Welcome to real politics, SIR!  No hiding now.  They will spin him to be a Liberal elitist taking money away from busking Cpls in Cold Lake!
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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #48 on: February 16, 2014, 18:52:29 »
I'm curious as to how much of that cost is to pay the moving company. That's got to be a significant portion of it, especially if he's got a large amount of items in a large home. Full day pack, full day load, full day unload, etc.

And given the cost of his home (over $1 million) the real estate fees, being a percentage of the sale price, would account for another big chunk I'd think.

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Re: Retired general claims $72K in moving expenses (CTV)
« Reply #49 on: February 16, 2014, 18:56:44 »
And given the cost of his home (over $1 million) the real estate fees, being a percentage of the sale price, would account for another big chunk I'd think.

Absolutely. I really hope this comes back to bite the "gotcha" media with a review that says "Gen Leslie was moved in accordance with TBS policy, here's a breakdown of all the costs he never saw."

MSM is making it sound like he got moved, and then got a cheque for $72,000.